Crouch Urges Ethics Reform and Start-Up Requirements before End of Session
Assemblyman Clifford W. Crouch (R-Bainbridge) today urged the Assembly Majority to bring two measures to the floor that would require more transparency and accountability in regard to economic development programs and would restore START-UP NY requirements. The push for this legislation comes at a time when corruption is being investigated in some of the governor’s signature economic development programs. Crouch said he and his Conference colleagues have had a bill, A.5657, since last June, before anyone was indicted.
“There needs to be more transparency and accountability in regard to the economic development initiatives that are pushed by the governor,” said Crouch. “In recent months, we have seen several people linked to these programs indicted on charges of corruption. These initiatives are funded by taxpayer dollars and we need to be doing all we can to ensure that money does not continue to be wasted or misused.”
Crouch also said he would like to see the START-UP NY requirements reinstated which were secretly removed from this year’s budget during negotiations. A.7427 would restore these requirements, including establishing that an annual report be prepared and provided to the governor and the Legislature which would include the number of business applicants, number of businesses approved, benefits distributed and received and number of net new jobs created per business.
“The governor cleverly removed the START-UP NY requirements during budget negotiations this year,” said Crouch. “He clearly did so in an attempt to cover up his quite obvious incompetence and humiliating job-creation numbers. He has spent millions of taxpayer dollars to create a handful of jobs. Restoring the annual START-UP NY reporting requirements is crucial to providing more transparency and oversight into an initiative that is shrouded in mystery and alleged corruption. I hope to see these requirements restored before the end of session; we owe it to the public.”